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13th Annual VisionFest, Downtown, Los Angeles





Jacques Thelemaque’s film career began in 1993 when he co-founded Filmmakers Alliance . FA is a grassroots film organization of filmmakers as well as an independent filmmaking resource organization with a major presence at film festivals. In this capacity, he has overseen the production of hundreds of films and developed filmmaking support programs. As a writer-director his work includes the feature film "The Dogwalker" (Los Angeles Film Festival, Hong Kong International Film Festival, Best First Feature - Cinequest Film Festival), as well as the shorts "Transaction" (Sundance Film Festival, winner of the Grand Prix du Jury Award in the Labo Competition at the Clermont-Ferrand Short Film Festival), "Infidelity " (Sundance Film Festival, Los Angeles Film Festival), "Egg” (Mill Valley Film Festival, Best Comedy Short - Cinequest Film Festival, Jury Award for Best Short – Methodfest) and "Love Without Socks" (AFI FEST – American Film Institute).

Yesterday, August 27th, Telemaque unveiled his 13th Annual VisionFest, which is Filmmakers Alliance annual screening and celebration of the independent film community. The evening began with the presentation of the Nilsson award (curated and presented by indie stalwart Rob Nilsson) to recognize challenging auteurs that often are ignored by an increasingly mainstream independent film community. This year's Nilsson Award recipient was Armenian filmmaker Harutyun Khachatryan, a visual poet of landscapes and nature.

Next, was the presentation of the Vision Award, given for consistent filmmaking excellence and artistic inspiration. Past recipients include Mike Figgis, Terry Gilliam, Wim Wenders, Allison Anders, Alexander Payne, David O. Russell, Werner Herzog, Mark and Michael Polish, Kevin Smith, and producer Ted Hope. This year’s Vision Award Recipient was Danish filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn. Refn was introduced by Stephen Pizzello, executive editor of American Cinematographer magazine. This year's award was presented by the talented and funny Ryan Gosling. The actor started by saying that Refn wrote his speech and asked him to refer to the director as “genius” and “maestro”.

Refn took the stage and delivered an incredibly memorable speech filled with self-irony. Known for the “Pusher” trilogy and “Bronson”, Refn’s been making films for fifteen years. He summed up his artistic journey by saying that he started as a self-obsessed nihilist and gradually became a filmmaker of emotional relief.

The evening ended by the program of the best short films produced through Filmmakers Alliance in the previous year and programmed by producer Roger M. Mayer.

Please, check Filmmakers Alliance website for upcoming events and screenings